Talk: Dogs and cats, living together! How approaches to Josephson junction and spin-based quantum computing can learn from each other

I will talk about two of our recent proposals for quantum computers based on superconducting JJ circuits [1] and spins in semiconductors [2]: what motivated them, why they are worth pursuing experimentally, and directions for future research.

[1] Semiconductor-inspired design principles for superconducting quantum computing, Nature Communications 7, 11059 (2016)

[2] Charge-noise-insensitive gate operations for always-on, exchange-only qubits, Phys. Rev. B 93, 121410(R) (2016)

Lincoln Laboratory, Boston, MA




PRB-Rapid: Charge-noise-insensitive gate operations for always-on, exchange-only qubits

We introduce an always-on, exchange-only (AEON) qubit made up of three localized semiconductor spins that offers a true “sweet spot” to fluctuations of the quantum dot energy levels. Both single- and two-qubit gate operations can be performed using only exchange pulses while maintaining this sweet spot. We show how to interconvert this qubit to other three-spin encoded qubits as a resource for quantum computation and communication.

Charge-noise-insensitive gate operations for always-on, exchange-only qubits (aps.org)



Talk: Silicon Quantum Information Technology

Information technology based on the fundamental nature of the universe, namely quantum physics, can in some cases dramatically outperform the best “classical” solution. In other words, a quantum computer will be important someday. But the challenges are still immense. Somewhat surprisingly, silicon may continue to be an exceptionally relevant material even into a future era of quantum-enhanced technology. Here I will discuss progress in silicon quantum computing and related semiconductor-based devices touching on my own research interests and highlighting experimental results across the community.

GOMACTech, Orlando, FL



Nature Communications: Semiconductor-inspired design principles for superconducting quantum computing

Superconducting circuits offer tremendous design flexibility in the quantum regime culminating most recently in the demonstration of few qubit systems supposedly approaching the threshold for fault-tolerant quantum information processing. Competition in the solid-state comes from semiconductor qubits, where nature has bestowed some very useful properties which can be utilized for spin qubit-based quantum computing. Here we begin to explore how selective design principles deduced from spin-based systems could be used to advance superconducting qubit science. We take an initial step along this path proposing an encoded qubit approach realizable with state-of-the-art tunable Josephson junction qubits. Our results show that this design philosophy holds promise, enables microwave-free control, and offers a pathway to future qubit designs with new capabilities such as with higher fidelity or, perhaps, operation at higher temperature. The approach is also especially suited to qubits based on variable super-semi junctions.

Semiconductor-inspired design principles for superconducting quantum computing (nature.com)

Press Release: A microwave-free approach to superconducting quantum computing uses design principles gleaned from semiconductor spin qubits. (eurekalert.org)



Preprint: Entangling distant resonant exchange qubits via circuit quantum electrodynamics

We investigate a hybrid quantum system consisting of spatially separated resonant exchange qubits, defined in three-electron semiconductor triple quantum dots, that are coupled via a superconducting transmission line resonator. Drawing on methods from circuit quantum electrodynamics and Hartmann-Hahn double resonance techniques, we analyze three specific approaches for implementing resonator-mediated two-qubit entangling gates in both dispersive and resonant regimes of interaction. We calculate entangling gate fidelities as well as the rate of relaxation via phonons for resonant exchange qubits in silicon triple dots and show that such an implementation is particularly well-suited to achieving the strong coupling regime. Our approach combines the favorable coherence properties of encoded spin qubits in silicon with the rapid and robust long-range entanglement provided by circuit QED systems.

Entangling distant resonant exchange qubits via circuit quantum electrodynamics (arxiv.org)



Talk: A new look at encoded-qubit quantum dot quantum computing in silicon

Although the properties of spin-based qubits are specified by the material system they reside in, it’s possible to modify those properties by encoding a qubit into multiple physical spins. Here we consider new operating regimes for encoded spin qubits and discuss their relevance to spin-based quantum computing and qubit-qubit coupling, especially in silicon quantum dot systems. We will also briefly discuss recent developments in g-factor theory in silicon quantum dots and their possible implications.

We introduce an always-on, exchange-only qubit made up of three localized semiconductor spins that offers a true “sweet spot” to fluctuations of the quantum dot energy levels. Both single- and two-qubit gate operations can be performed using only exchange pulses while maintaining this sweet spot. We show how to interconvert this qubit to other three-spin encoded qubits as a new resource for quantum computation and communication.

APS March Meeting, Baltimore, MD

A new look at encoded-qubit quantum dot quantum computing in silicon




Preprint: Charge-noise-insensitive gate operations for always-on, exchange-only qubits

We introduce an always-on, exchange-only qubit made up of three localized semiconductor spins that offers a true “sweet spot” to fluctuations of the quantum dot energy levels. Both single- and two-qubit gate operations can be performed using only exchange pulses while maintaining this sweet spot. We show how to interconvert this qubit to other three-spin encoded qubits as a new resource for quantum computation and communication.

Charge-noise-insensitive gate operations for always-on, exchange-only qubits (arxiv.org)



NEQST RFI released. Responses due Jan 19

The U.S. Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Research Triangle Park Division. is issuing this Request for Information (RFI) in support of the U.S. Army Research Office (ARO) and the Laboratory for Physical Sciences (LPS), in seeking information on emerging ideas, concepts, and approaches for qubit-related science and technology, specifically those related to quantum information processing. Of specific interest are qubit systems that explore new operating regimes and environments, fundamentally new methods of fabrication, and new methods of design, control, or operation. These explorations should have in mind the development of quantum hardware where the novel properties of these systems create significant advantages in coherence, fabrication, and/or qubit operation over current state-of-the-art qubits.

New and Emerging Qubit Science and Technology (NEQST) RFI (fbo.gov)



PRB-Rapid: Spin-orbit coupling and operation of multivalley spin qubits

M. Veldhorst, R. Ruskov, C. H. Yang, J. C. C. Hwang, F. E. Hudson, M. E. Flatté, C. Tahan, K. M. Itoh, A. Morello, and A. S. Dzurak

Spin qubits composed of either one or three electrons are realized in a quantum dot formed at a Si/SiO2 interface in isotopically enriched silicon. Using pulsed electron-spin resonance, we perform coherent control of both types of qubits, addressing them via an electric field dependent g factor. We perform randomized benchmarking and find that both qubits can be operated with high fidelity. Surprisingly, we find that the g factors of the one-electron and three-electron qubits have an approximately linear but opposite dependence as a function of the applied dc electric field. We develop a theory to explain this g-factor behavior based on the spin-valley coupling that results from the sharp interface. The outer “shell” electron in the three-electron qubit exists in the higher of the two available conduction-band valley states, in contrast with the one-electron case, where the electron is in the lower valley. We formulate a modified effective mass theory and propose that intervalley spin-flip tunneling dominates over intravalley spin flips in this system, leading to a direct correlation between the spin-orbit coupling parameters and the g factors in the two valleys. In addition to offering all-electrical tuning for single-qubit gates, the g-factor physics revealed here for one-electron and three-electron qubits offers potential opportunities for different qubit control approaches.

Spin-orbit coupling and operation of multivalley spin qubits (aps.org)



2015 APS Fellow

Grateful to be named a fellow of the American Physical Society by the (future) Division of Quantum Information. Congrats to all the fellows this year!

Tahan, Charles [2015], Laboratory for Physical Sciences

Citation: For important contributions to the field of quantum information science, including theoretical work advancing the experimental development of silicon quantum computers and proposing new quantum devices in the solid state.


Tags career


Preprint: Semiconductor-inspired superconducting quantum computing

Yun-Pil Shim, Charles Tahan

Superconducting circuits offer tremendous design flexibility in the quantum regime culminating most recently in the demonstration of few qubit systems supposedly approaching the threshold for fault-tolerant quantum information processing. Competition in the solid-state comes from semiconductor qubits, where nature has bestowed some almost magical and very useful properties which can be utilized for spin qubit based quantum computing. Here we begin to explore how selective design principles deduced from spin-based systems could be used to advance superconducting qubit science. We take an initial step along this path proposing an encoded qubit approach realizable with state-of-the-art tunable Josephson junction qubits. Our results show that this design philosophy holds promise, enables microwave-free control with minimal overhead (zero overhead in 2-qubit gates), and offers a pathway to future qubit designs with new capabilities such as with higher fidelity or, perhaps, operation at higher temperature. The approach is especially suited to qubits based on variable super-semi junctions.

Semiconductor-inspired superconducting quantum computing (arxiv.org)



Preprint: Spin-orbit coupling and operation of multi-valley spin qubits

M. Veldhorst, R. Ruskov, C.H. Yang, J.C.C. Hwang, F.E. Hudson, M.E. Flatté, C. Tahan, K.M. Itoh, A. Morello, A.S. Dzurak

Spin qubits composed of either one or three electrons are realized in a quantum dot formed at a Si/SiO_2-interface in isotopically enriched silicon. Using pulsed electron spin resonance, we perform coherent control of both types of qubits, addressing them via an electric field dependent g-factor. We perform randomized benchmarking and find that both qubits can be operated with high fidelity. Surprisingly, we find that the g-factors of the one-electron and three-electron qubits have an approximately linear but opposite dependence as a function of the applied dc electric field. We develop a theory to explain this g-factor behavior based on the spin-valley coupling that results from the sharp interface. The outer “shell” electron in the three-electron qubit exists in the higher of the two available conduction-band valley states, in contrast with the one-electron case, where the electron is in the lower valley. We formulate a modified effective mass theory and propose that inter-valley spin-flip tunneling dominates over intra-valley spin-flips in this system, leading to a direct correlation between the spin-orbit coupling parameters and the g-factors in the two valleys. In addition to offering all-electrical tuning for single-qubit gates, the g-factor physics revealed here for one-electron and three-electron qubits offers potential opportunities for new qubit control approaches.

Spin-orbit coupling and operation of multi-valley spin qubits (arxiv.org)



Science Perspective: Catching the quantum sound wave

Rusko Ruskov, Charles Tahan

An ultrasound transducer (“the wand”) both creates and detects sound waves that travel through the body to create images of internal organs or precious cargo (see the figure, panel A). This compact device is made possible with piezoelectric crystals that expand or contract in response to an applied voltage and thus interconvert sound waves and electrical signals. Because sound travels relatively slowly, there is time to process the reflected pulses and display an image in real time. These measurements are in the realm of classical physics, but sound could also play a useful role in quantum-based devices. On page 207 of this issue, Gustafsson et al. (1) take a major step toward that goal, demonstrating a system in which a specially engineered artificial atom in the form of a superconducting quantum bit (qubit) couples to propagating surface acoustic waves on a chip. This soundmatter system shows evidence of quantum behavior.

Catching the quantum sound wave (sciencemag.org)



IEEE: Superconducting-Semiconductor Quantum Devices: From Qubits to Particle Detectors

Yun-Pil Shim, Charles Tahan

Recent improvements in materials growth and fabrication techniques may finally allow for superconducting semiconductors to realize their potential. Here, we build on a recent proposal to construct superconducting devices such as wires, Josephson junctions, and qubits inside and out-of single crystal silicon or germanium. Using atomistic fabrication techniques such as STM hydrogen lithography, heavily doped superconducting regions within a single crystal could be constructed. We describe the characteristic parameters of basic superconducting elements-a 1-D wire and a tunneling Josephson junction-and estimate the values for boron-doped silicon. The epitaxial, single-crystal nature of these devices, along with the extreme flexibility in device design down to the single-atom scale, may enable lower noise or new types of devices and physics. We consider applications for such supersilicon devices, showing that the state-of-the-art transmon qubit and the sought-after phase-slip qubit can both be realized. The latter qubit leverages the natural high kinetic inductance of these materials. Building on this, we explore how kinetic inductance-based particle detectors (e.g., photon or phonon) could be realized with potential application in astronomy or nanomechanics. We discuss supersemi devices (such as in silicon, germanium, or diamond) which would not require atomistic fabrication approaches and could be realized today.

Superconducting-Semiconductor Quantum Devices: From Qubits to Particle Detectors (ieee.org)



Nature Communications: Bottom-up superconducting and Josephson junction devices inside a group-IV semiconductor

Yun-Pil Shim, Charles Tahan

Superconducting circuits are exceptionally flexible, enabling many different devices from sensors to quantum computers. Separately, epitaxial semiconductor devices such as spin qubits in silicon offer more limited device variation but extraordinary quantum properties for a solid-state system. It might be possible to merge the two approaches, making single-crystal superconducting devices out of a semiconductor by utilizing the latest atomistic fabrication techniques. Here we propose superconducting devices made from precision hole-doped regions within a silicon (or germanium) single crystal. We analyse the properties of this superconducting semiconductor and show that practical superconducting wires, Josephson tunnel junctions or weak links, superconducting quantum interference devices (SQUIDs) and qubits are feasible. This work motivates the pursuit of ‘bottom-up’ superconductivity for improved or fundamentally different technology and physics.

Bottom-up superconducting and Josephson junction devices inside a group-IV semiconductor (nature.com)



Preprint: Superconducting-semiconductor quantum devices: from qubits to particle detectors

Yun-Pil Shim, Charles Tahan

Recent improvements in materials growth and fabrication techniques may finally allow for superconducting semiconductors to realize their potential. Here we build on a recent proposal to construct superconducting devices such as wires, Josephson junctions, and qubits inside and out-of single crystal silicon or germanium. Using atomistic fabrication techniques such as STM hydrogen lithography, heavily-doped superconducting regions within a single crystal could be constructed. We describe the characteristic parameters of basic superconducting elements—-a 1D wire and a tunneling Josephson junction—-and estimate the values for boron-doped silicon. The epitaxial, single-crystal nature of these devices, along with the extreme flexibility in device design down to the single-atom scale, may enable lower-noise or new types of devices and physics. We consider applications for such super-silicon devices, showing that the state-of-the-art transmon qubit and the sought-after phase-slip qubit can both be realized. The latter qubit leverages the natural high kinetic inductance of these materials. Building on this, we explore how kinetic inductance based particle detectors (e.g., photon or phonon) could be realized with potential application in astronomy or nanomechanics. We discuss super-semi devices (such as in silicon, germanium, or diamond) which would not require atomistic fabrication approaches and could be realized today.

Superconducting-semiconductor quantum devices: from qubits to particle detectors (arxiv.org)



Nature Communications: Electron spin resonance and spin-valley physics in a silicon double quantum dot

Xiaojie Hao, Rusko Ruskov, Ming Xiao, Charles Tahan, HongWen Jiang

Silicon quantum dots are a leading approach for solid-state quantum bits. However, developing this technology is complicated by the multi-valley nature of silicon. Here we observe transport of individual electrons in a silicon CMOS-based double quantum dot under electron spin resonance. An anticrossing of the driven dot energy levels is observed when the Zeeman and valley splittings coincide. A detected anticrossing splitting of 60 MHz is interpreted as a direct measure of spin and valley mixing, facilitated by spin–orbit interaction in the presence of non-ideal interfaces. A lower bound of spin dephasing time of 63 ns is extracted. We also describe a possible experimental evidence of an unconventional spin–valley blockade, despite the assumption of non-ideal interfaces. This understanding of silicon spin–valley physics should enable better control and read-out techniques for the spin qubits in an all CMOS silicon approach.

Electron spin resonance and spin–valley physics in a silicon double quantum dot (nature.com)




Charles Tahan
Physicist in Washington, D.C.